“Golden Autumn”, Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov – overview of the painting

“Golden Autumn”, Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov – overview of the painting
"Golden Autumn", Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov
  • Museum: Tretyakov Gallery
  • Year: 1886

Overview of the painting :

Golden autumn – Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov. Oil on canvas. 48.2 x 66.3 cm

   This picture is one of the most famous among the landscape painter. He wrote it in the Abramtsevo estate, owned by Savva Mamontov, an industrialist and philanthropist. The artist was well acquainted with his nephews.

   The estate is located in the park, the views of which had a direct impact on the creation of this canvas. The picture depicts a corner of nature at a time when the trees are already completely yellowed, but the foliage still rests on the branches. This is the most beautiful moment of autumn, rich in juicy, noble colors.

   The canvas very realistically conveys the impressions of a walk in the park at this beautiful time. The air is very clean and transparent, so all the details are clearly visible. There is no bright sun anymore, but the usual autumn grayness has not yet killed juicy, saturated tones of foliage. The trunks of the trees seem black against the background of the catchy gold of crowns. The grass breaking through a layer of fallen leaves is still green, and the sky is blue. But the past colds are indicated by half-empty branches of trees and leaves lying on the ground in a picturesque mess.

   If you look closely, you can see a thin bright path laid to the alleys of the park, and on it two tiny forty. These black and white birds peacefully stick out something from the earth, emphasizing its desolation with all its appearance. There are no people nearby, otherwise the magpies – very sensitive creatures – would by no means go down to the ground “get caught.”.

   If the mighty trunks and branches clearly loom in the trees on the long plane, and the crowns go into the sky, losing somewhere outside the picture, then the trees standing in the foreground are characterized by low-deep benches lowered to the ground. On one of them is a scattering of small as gold coins, rounded leaves, and the second tree is a maple decorated with large carved leaves of saturated yellow-orange color. The same leaves – and fresh, just fallen, and dim, already thawed – lie on the ground throughout the park.

   The picture looks very natural, realistic, although it cannot be said that every small detail on it is meticulously written out. The traditions of realistic painting and impressionism coexist safely coexist in it, although the last time here is more likely to be caught in the spirit, general mood of the canvas. A well-built multifaceted composition, the use of a rather restrained, albeit very bright color scheme, full impression of volume and air made the picture popular and brought fame to the artist.

   This is especially interesting when you consider that this was the first canvas with which the master took part in the exhibition of editorial artists. The undoubted skill of the landscape painter gave reason to many to consider him a follower of the best traditions of Russian landscape painting, laid by Levitan and Quinji.

   It is this game of sizes and textures – blurry outlines of the long-range plan and clear contours of objects in the front – and create the feeling of presence that was highly appreciated by the artist’s contemporaries. After participating in the exhibition of travelers, the painting was bought for the Tretyakov Gallery.